The subject guitar is a Ibanez Jem555 model. I understand from the owner the neck feels slightly thicker than the various Jem7Vs that he'd tried. He would like the neck to be as close to the feel of a Jem7V. I usually prefer not to modify an instrument as it goes against my philosophy of making any major or irreversible changes on the instrument. However, the owner is 100% certain of the changes he wants made. I agreed to do shave his neck as close to the Jem7V specs after he has been made aware of all the possible consequences of the said modification.

According to the Ibanez website, the Jem neck should measure 19mm or 0.75" at the 1st fret and 21mm or 0.83" at the 12th fret. However, there will be slight variaiton between every neck and no two necks feels exactly the same. True enough to the owner's very sensitive feel of the neck, the subject neck is 0.009" thicker at the 1st fret and .009 thinner at the 12th fret. We agreed to just shave down the neck from the 1st fret to the 12th fret as the neck is already 0.009" thinner at the 12th fret.

Halfway through the shaping of the neck, the owner dropped by to confirm we nailed the exact backshape he had in mind before I began preparation to re-finish the neck.
The neck's shaved down to size. Well, almost. It's 0.001" thinner than what we're shooting for and the finish will make up the difference.
The back of the neck is re-finished and de-glossed to a satin finish.
The guitar is put together, set up and ready to go.

Hereís the customerís comment on the guitar.

 

Hey Malcolm,

 

I've just been playing my guitar, she is also called Syx, for a few hours and I can't express to you how delighted I am with your job. I've been re-motivated to start practicing like I had intended to again because of this, and this guitar has turned out to be absolutely perfect. You set out to make this guitar just like a Jem 7, and I think you did a better job than you were supposed to and I've ended up with something that is as amazing a well set up Jem 7, and better than most Jem 7's there are. Its better than any Jem 7 I've tried except for the inlay, but thats ok, and that is really something.

 

You were really quick to start and finish but your accuracy and care were not in any way compromised and the craftsmenship on the guitar is beautiful. My guitar is extrememly happy too, she plays like a happy guitar. I must also appreciate the fact that you informed me really carefully about every possibilty, disadvantage and advantage, and also only took on the job after you knew you could do it 100% safe and well. I also really liked the way that you only started after you were sure that I knew what was going on and what you'd be doing exactly.

 

Your tools are really something else. Accuracy and precision would be the words that come to mind. Ultra cool.

 

I also want to thank you for being really friendly, helpful, available to call and talk to at any time, and an awesome guitar tech. Your setup was also really cool, apart from your beautiful craftsmenship and work. Thanks a lot, I know for sure who to go to for anything to do with guitars in Singapore for anything. Even if you don't do something, you always know whether is an ok idea, who to go to and what to do. It was also cool to talk to you, you're really helpful and a nice guy. Thanks for letting me stay and talk with you and of course try my guitar and play for 3 hours the day I came to get the guitar. Syx is truly a Jem now.

 

Thanks a lot for everything Malcolm, and I'll see you on the sustainer side. You might have just made me a guitar as great as Steve Vai's.

 

With many thanks,

 

Aman